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Award-winning wines to enjoy this summer

What’s your perfect summer paring? For us, its afternoon picnics, late night outdoor dinners, casual BBQs and backyard catch-ups with a delicious bottle of wine.

With results recently announced from Decanter World Wine Awards 2023 (where more than 18,200 wines were evaluated by some of the world’s top wine experts), and a particularly bright spring leading into a promising summer, we can think of a few top-rated wines to beat the heat.

Whether you’re a lover of the classics, an avid wine adventurer or somewhere in between, we’ve selected 16 expert-rated wines to elevate your summer plans, alongside what to pair them with.

From white wines for easy summer sipping to thirst quenching sparklers, and reds to pair effortlessly with your afternoon-turned-evening barbecues, get your hands on the below award-winning wines for enjoyable summertime drinking, while supplies last.

For lovers of the classics

Marks & Spencer, Delacourt Rosé Brut, Champagne, France, NV

Cheers into summer with this lively rosé Champagne. Made using Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Meunier, this sparkler’s raspberry, strawberry and cherry notes are reminiscent of walking through a ‘pick your own’ field. A perfect aperitif to excite the summer senses.

Silver, 92 points
£26 Marks & Spencer
Aromas of sweet candied red fruits on the nose. Silky, fragrant and refined, with a citrusy undertone and a lively structure. Alc 12.5%

Vavasour, Sauvignon Blanc, Awatere Valley, Marlborough, New Zealand 2022

A top-rated wine for easy summer sipping, this wine was described by the expert judges as ‘crowd pleasing, but classy too’ . Enjoy as an aperitif or with light summer starters such as ceviche, guacamole and roasted red peppers.

Gold, 95 points
£12.99 Majestic

Savoury, vibrant and pure with an expressive citrus and grassy scent. The palate has zippy acidity, great vibrato and attractive gooseberry notes. Alc 12.5%

Maison Mirabeau, X, Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence, Provence, France 2022

A known summertime favourite, this rosé’s zingy character makes it a thirst quencher in the summer sun. Charcuterie, feta, spinach and strawberry salad, salmon and pesto pasta are a few summer pairing options, but this wine will equally delight on its own.

Silver, 90 points
£13.50 Ocado.com

Aromatic nose with raspberry and rhubarb aromas. A spritzy texture with lively fruit but balanced and pleasant to drink. Alc 12.5% 

Neil Ellis Wines, Whitehall Chardonnay, Elgin, South Africa 2021

Not your average summer sipper, this fine Chardonnay’s tropical notes and racy acidity will delight. Pair with fresh rocket salads, fruit bowls, shellfish, salmon and lemon chicken.

Platinum, 97 points
£31.95 South Downs Cellars, Cheers Cellars

Pure and fruit driven, wonderfully fresh and vibrant nose showing elegant aromas of green apples, white peaches, lemon curd and pineapple. Fresh and zippy palate, with a racy acidity, showing tension. Elegant lemony finish. Alc 13% 

Thistledown Wines, Thorny Devil Old Vine Grenache, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia 2022

A summertime barbecue crowd pleaser, pair with grilled meats like ribs or lamb, burgers and charred mushrooms or aubergines.

Silver, 92 points
£17.99-£19.99 NY Wines, Aus Wines Online, The Solent Cellar (2021)

Delicate restrained nose displaying subtle toast notes and bright red fruit aromas. Firm palate, succulent, with firm tannins. Alc 14% 

For the explorers

Kreinbacher Birtok, Prestige Brut, Hungary NV

Produced with 54% Furmint and 46% Chardonnay, this traditional method sparkling wine offers wine explorers something new to try this summer. Furmint supplies a crisp, mineral profile to the wine, while the Chardonnay complements with notes reminiscent of Champagne. Pair with seafood, soft cheeses, fried fish and crêpes. 

Silver, 94 points
£28 Best of Hungary
Complex aromas of baked citrus, yogurt, stone fruit and touches of toast and brioche. Saline on the palate, serious finish. Alc. 12%

Bodega Brisas, Altos De José Ignacio Reserva Albariño, Uruguay 2022

Transport yourself to the coastline with this slightly mineral, aromatic and approachable Albariño from Uruguay. Pair with seafood linguini, potato salad, grilled white meats and flaky fish. 

Silver, 91 points
£14.89-£18 Bibendum Wine, All About Wine, Kwoff, The Fine Wine Company (2021)
Lemony nose with notes of apple skin, orange blossom and oyster shell. Approachable on the palate, weighty, with a zingy finish. Alc. 12.5%

Alpha Estate, Single Vineyard Turtles Malagouzia, Florina, Macedonia, Greece 2022

Ideal with Mediterranean and Greek dishes. A summertime picnic wine to pair with herby pasta salads, fresh vegetable salads with olive oil, yellow cheeses, hummus and grilled white fish.

Silver, 91 points
£17.50 Maltby & Greek

Fruit-driven with chopped basil and fresh oregano. Crisp palate with juicy fruits enhanced by minerals and citrus zest. Well made. Alc 13% 

Symington Family Estates, Quinta Da Fonte Souto, Portalegre, Alentejo, Portugal 2021

A great match for your Asian cuisine cravings. This wine’s complexity and refreshing acidity will make a perfect pairing with some gyozas, edamame, cucumber salads and umami flavours.

Silver, 93 points
£17.50 The Wine Society
Nutty nose with interesting aromas of cardamom, melon, sage and verbena. Creamy on the palate, with a lively acidity. Alc.14.5%

Durigutti, Proyecto Las Compuertas Criolla Gobelet, Las Compuertas, Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina 2022

Red wine lovers, slightly chill this 100% Criolla for enjoyable sunshine sipping. It’s soft tannins and easy drinkability make this a wine to enjoy all on its own. To pair, try a roast chicken or smoked ham sandwich and crisps for guaranteed enjoyment. 

Silver, 92 points
£18.50 NYWines (2021)

Lifted nose, showing lovely nuances of red cherries. Soft tannins on the palate, very juicy and easy to drink. Alc 11.3% 

Blandy’s Madeira, 5 Year Old, Madeira, Portugal NV

Ever heard of Madeira and tonic? A fortified wine with incredible acidity, Madeira’s use in cocktails is one of the wine world’s best kept secrets. From day to night, this simple serve is your thirst-quenching, low-alcohol answer to summer sipping with a twist. Pair with light tonic, ice and a lemon twist.

Silver, 90 points
£14.99-17.99 Waitrose, Cambridge Wine Merchants, Slurp
Rich raisin and dried fig on the nose. Nicely balanced acidity with good freshness and a fruit cake finish. Alc 19%

Familiar, but new

Raimes, Classic Brut, Hampshire, United Kingdom 2018

England is a wine region to watch, and while its sparkling wines are familiar to many in the UK, there’s still much to discover – including this 95-point wine. Price point to quality, this Gold medal winning bottle of bubbles is sure to delight this summer, and we don’t expect stocks to last long. Pair with salmon canapés, shellfish or fresh cream and strawberries.

Gold, 95 points
Orchard characters on the very elegant nose, good concentration on the palate with crisp citrus and bready notes. Long, elegant finish and division of structural power. Alc 12% 

Karamolegos Winery, The Society’s Exhibition Assyrtiko, Santorini, Aegean Islands, Greece 2021

Crisp and refreshing with great acidity to stand up to the warmest of days, this Assyrtiko from Santorini offers exceptional value for quality. Try with a fresh watermelon and feta salad or fish & chips.

Silver, 90 points
£17.50 The Wine Society
Peach and apricot aromas follow through the palate with a round texture and a long, citrus aftertaste. A well-made wine at a good price with genuine Santorini character. Alc 13%

Yealands Estate Wines, Reserve Grüner Veltliner, Marlborough, New Zealand 2022

Make your green and grain salads sing with this New Zealand rendition of Austria’s indigenous Grüner Veltliner. A palate cleanser, enjoy on its own or with grilled green vegetables like asparagus.

Silver, 93 points
£12.99 Waitrose

Attractive earthy characters with an undercurrent of grapefruit, white florals and spice; textured and aromatic with a long fresh finish. Alc 12.5%

Domaine Sautereau, Sancerre, Loire, France 2022

Best known for Sauvignon Blanc, this Sancerre rosé is produced with 100% Pinot Noir and is sure to please the most discerning of summer sippers. Top-scoring with mouth-watering tasting notes, if looking to try something new within familiar territory, this wine will excite all on its own. 

Gold, 95 points
£24.99 Hay Wines

Stunning floral aromas underpinned by a core of sumptuous red fruit, with a soft pillow of velvety tannins, a strawberry acidity and a deliciously long finish. Alc 12.5% 

La Ronciere, Cabernet Franc, Licantén, Curicó, Chile 2018

Licantén is one of the newest viticultural areas in Central Chile. Supple with spicy flavours and ripe dark fruits this is a perfect companion for your summertime Sunday roasts.

Gold, 95 points
£14.95 Corney & Barrow
Lovely swirling aromas, showing notes of prunes, sultana, cinnamon stick, brown sugar and hints of roasted red pepper, hints of oak. Supple and harmonious palate. Alc. 14%

Search all DWWA 2023 award-winning wines

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The post Award-winning wines to enjoy this summer appeared first on Decanter.

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